Finally, it’s February. The dark days of January are behind us, and hopefully the worst of winter is, too.
Spring isn’t in the air, but as Valentine’s Day approaches, love most certainly is! If you’re keen to impress a loved one, a romantic dinner for two is hard to beat.
Left it too late to secure that fancy restaurant booking? No problem. Our national trainer Jo Underhay has sourced a selection of romantic meals from some of her favourite food bloggers. Read on for heaps of inspiration and extra-special dinner ideas for two.
Oysters: Perfect if you’re looking for minimal effort but maximum impact on Valentine’s Day!
Oysters are well known for their aphrodisiac properties, making them the perfect starter for your romantic Valentine’s Day dinner. I think this Oysters on the Half Shell recipe from Woman’sDay is a real showstopper. Dylan Fultineer is an oyster expert, and this is one of his favourite ways to serve them raw. This is the perfect starter if you’re looking for dinner ideas for two, which involve minimal effort but deliver maximum impact. This is sure to seriously impress your loved one.
No romantic meal for two would be complete without a special bottle of wine. Pair your oysters with a crisp, dry white, such as Chablis or Muscadet. Of course, if you’ve splashed out on a special bottle, you’ll need to serve – and more importantly, store it – correctly. Faint heart never won fair lady, and nor did warm white wine! Our Classic WC1792 and Sense WC1796 wine cabinets are the perfect solution.
Both feature Caple’s signature no-frost compressor cooling technology, which maintains a constant temperature. And they are vibration free, in order to prevent any disturbance to your wine. Best of all, both models operate at 45dB, far lower than conversation levels (59dB). So you can still whisper sweet nothings to your beloved, without any appliance-related disturbances!
Linguine and shrimp is one of my favourite dinner ideas for two
Valentine’s Day falls on a Friday this year, which means most of us will be at work all day. Fear not as I have searched for one of the quickest and easiest dinner ideas for two when it comes to the main course. Feast your eyes on this One Pan Creamy Parmesan Linguine with Shrimp recipe, from the Cooking Classy food blog. It involves minimal prep and can be ready in just 20 minutes. Best of all, there are no complicated processes: it’s all cooked in one pan on the hob.
Our new C772G gas hob is perfect when you need to make every minute count. That’s because it features our signature DirectHeat+. This produces a 45° inclined flame, which sends heat upwards directly towards the base of the pan. Nothing escapes around the sides. DirectHeat+ therefore decreases boiling time and brings food up to temperature more quickly and efficiently. Perfect pasta – on date night or any other occasion – has never been easier!
Planning to pop the question this Valentine’s Day (and ladies, it is a Leap Year)? If so, I have found the perfect recipe, courtesy of Christina Lane’s Dessert for Two blog. If you’re looking for one of the ultimate romantic dinner ideas for two, this has got to be it. After all, is there a more romantic meal title than Engagement Chicken Pasta? This creamy pasta dish with seared mushrooms and sliced chicken is delicious enough to make anyone say yes!
Another hob recipe, this requires two burners, one for the pasta, and one for the other ingredients. Enjoy maximum versatility, and mix and match your options,
with our new C722G gas hob I’ve mentioned. It includes one dual fuel ring burner, one rapid burner, two semi-rapid burners and one simmer burner.
Top tip: This dish is best served immediately after making it, so plan your timings carefully!
If you’re after vegetarian dinner ideas for two this Valentine’s Day, why not try shakshuka? This version, from Grace and Maddie’s Double Thyme blog, can be easily assembled from store cupboard staples. This one-pot meal features eggs, peppers, tinned plum tomatoes, onions, garlic, spinach and spices. Perfect if you’re looking to serve up a cosy, comforting meal for two – and curl up together afterwards!
Top tip: Serve with warm pitta, or toasted multigrain bread. For added flavour, sprinkle a little feta over the top.
If you have more time to spend on your romantic meal, I’d recommend risotto. Food blogger Lindsay’s Pinch of Yum Brown Butter Scallops with Parmesan Risotto is fool-proof and fabulous. It’s definitely one of my favourite dinner ideas for two. It promises to take you and your beloved to heaven and back again in one bite – ideal for Valentine’s Day! Once again, everything is prepared on the hob. Warning: there is plenty of stirring involved, as with any decent risotto recipe. But you can gaze adoringly at your partner while you’re doing it. And the end result is well worth the effort, I promise!
Top tip: Pat your scallops as dry as possible before adding them to your hot pan. Make sure you shake them gently to prevent sticking.
Romantic dinner ideas for two would just not be complete with a decadent dessert. I’m a huge fan of the classic Italian dessert Tiramisu. The PetiteCook Andrea Soraidis has created a wonderfully authentic version that replaces the traditional raw egg yolks with whipped cream.
Her recipe uses just seven ingredients, and is ready in just 20 minutes. Her portions are quite generous, so you can always enjoy any leftovers the following day – for breakfast perhaps?!
Top tip: This dessert tastes even better if prepared the day before and chilled overnight.
If your Valentine’s dinner date is vegan or gluten-free, that doesn’t mean indulgent desserts are off the menu. Wallflower Kitchen’s Double Chocolate Buckwheat Muffins are absolutely divine. They’re also free from refined sugars, contain no soya and are freezer-friendly. Best of all, there’s nothing complicated about the recipe. You basically mix the ingredients, divide into muffin cases and bake for 20 minutes.
Mini portions means you can make more than you need and could even pop the rest in the freezer once they’ve cooled down.
What better dessert to cook for the apple of your eye, than an apple and blackberry crumble? This classic pudding is given an allergy-friendly twist by Anna Bloomfield, in her Once Upon a Food blog. Her version is free from grain, dairy and refined sugar – but full of flavour nonetheless. And I do think individual mini portions always feel a bit more special and sophisticated.
Love the idea of baking, but feel less enamoured by the idea of scrubbing your oven clean afterwards? Our new C2402SS Sense Steel pyrolytic oven is the solution. This model features a self-cleaning function, that heats the oven to 475°C, so even baked-on grime carbonises into fine ash. All you need to do is simply wipe the ash away with a damp cloth after use.
This oven also features a roomy 67-litre capacity and full touch controls for quick and easy navigation. And with our signature MotionHeat+ technology, you won’t need to preheat. All of which means less time cooking and clearing up – and more precious time wining and dining your Valentine’s date. May the food you serve set the mood for much love and laughter, and maybe even a ‘happily ever after’!